Last month I published some benchmarks where NVIDIA slaughtered AMD's Catalyst driver in APITest benchmarks, a set of OpenGL 4.x test cases. While these are just micro-benchmarks of modern OpenGL and designed for showing off potential solutions for problems to leading to lower driver overhead, there's been some improvements within the Catalyst 14.6 Beta on Linux. Up today are some new benchmarks of APITest using the latest AMD and NVIDIA drivers.
AMD's Catalyst 14.6 for Linux improves some GL4 support that affects APITest, which is now leading to more of the APITest problems properly running outside of NVIDIA's binary driver. However, AMD still has more work to do as these results will show. Graham Sellers of AMD explained in an email to Phoronix, "We're working on the APITest suite and have made a number of improvements in the last little while. I don't think much of it has hit the public driver yet, and we still have some ways to go, but we're getting there. Expect to see performance improve over the next little while."
Benchmarks of Valve's Source Engine games (and other Steam titles for that matter) aren't done in all Phoronix driver tests and graphics card articles for various reasons, among which is that there's other more GPU-demanding OpenGL tests to utilize for modern hardware. However, for those curious about the performance of various AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards using the latest proprietary drivers, here's some updated numbers.
This article is just to serve as some quick, updated reference results for those that keep requesting new Source Engine game results on the AMD/NVIDIA Linux drivers. At the common 1080p resolution with the high performance proprietary drivers, Valve's popular games with native Linux ports remain rather CPU bound but these results are requested nevertheless. Coming up in the days ahead will be the open-source driver results for Valve's popular games.
NVIDIA is working on adding HEVC/H.265 video decoding support to VDPAU.
NVIDIA developers are extending the "Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix" interfaces to allow the HEVC/H.265 requirements. The work aims to enable hardware-accelerated decoding of HEVC content under VDPAU and to provide a reference implementation for this video decoding. José Hiram Soltren, the developer that worked on this support, is also working on a HEVC decode patch for FFmpeg and MPlayer based upon the new API.
For those excited about the recent working Radeon R9 290 "Hawaii" Gallium3D support, a number of bug-fixes were committed in recent hours to Mesa for bettering the support for those wishing to use this open-source AMD Linux driver for their ultra high-end graphics hardware.
Open-source AMD Linux users wishing to use a Hawaii GPU will still need to utilize the patches that will not be queued up until the Linux 3.17 kernel (along with updating their Radeon microcode files) but the RadeonSI Gallium3D Mesa improvements are starting to hit the mainline tree.
Starting out the last week of July's Linux benchmarking on Phoronix is a fresh comparison of several NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards when comparing the performance of the latest open-source Nouveau driver against the latest NVIDIA proprietary Linux graphics driver. While the Kepler cards now support GPU re-clocking, the results aren't quite ideal yet.
AMD Hawaii support works with GLAMOR (both with the external library and the internal support found in X.Org Server 1.16), is running a variety of Steam games, etc. As a word of caution, MSAA might be one of the currently broken Hawaii features unless additionally applying a libdrm patch. Among the titles people are reportedly trying with the Hawaii GPU on RadeonSI Gallium3D include Civilization 5, Half-Life 2, Metro: Last Light, Portal 2, and XCOM: Enemy Unknown. The performance on the open driver is said to be satisfactory in most situations but with XCOM for instance the frame-rate on a R9 290 class GPU is under ten frames per second and there's also issues with GPU stalls. A big problem reported by a user comes down to very poor performance in playback of video streams, such as from Twitch.
Denon debuted a line of Sonos-like wireless multi-room HiFi speakers that stream audio from both Internet and local sources, and run on embedded Linux.
Like the similarly Linux-powered devices available from Sonos, Denon’s “Heos” wireless streaming speakers offer multi-room (multi-speaker) synchronized audio, and can deliver multiple audio streams from disparate sources to individual speakers or stereo-configured speaker pairs distributed around the home. Subscription streaming sources initially offered by Denon include Rhapsody, Pandora, Spotify, and TuneIn, with additional services offering DRM-free tracks “coming soon,” says the company.
For the better part of a year, the X.Org Foundation has been evaluating a possible merger with SPI. That work is still ongoing and could be put up for a vote in the weeks ahead.
At yesterday's X.Org Board of Directors' meeting (IRC log), an update was shared and comes down to Keith Packard working with the SPI on constructing a resolution to bring to the SPI board. However, first the X.Org board will need to review the draft, etc. Assuming the SPI board votes in favor of this resolution, the following step is then to take the revised X.Org Foundation member by-laws to a vote by all X.Org Foundation members.
As the second part of our Linux graphics testing this week after a Radeon R600/RadeonSI performance update with the Linux 3.16 kernel and Mesa 10.3-devel are some comparative numbers that include Intel's Haswell HD Graphics and various NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards on the Nouveau driver.
What we have for this article are the benchmarks of an assortment of AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce GPUs (and the integrated HD Graphics of the Core i7 Devil's Canyon processor used for testing all the hardware) with the latest open-source graphics drivers using Linux 3.16 and Mesa 10.3-devel. Ubuntu 14.04 LTS was running on the system with using the Ubuntu Mainline Kernel PPA for the latest kernel and the Oibaf PPA for the updated graphics drivers.
While the Radeon R9 290 series is now mature in the marketplace, the open-source Linux driver support has lagged. The Hawaii support had been broken for months (no working 3D on the open-source driver, but will work under the Catalyst Linux driver) and the few open-source AMD developers weren't tasked with fixing it over not being sure why it wasn't working and having no immediate business cases for fixing the support. Fortunately, with a bug comment made tonight, it seems things might be in order.
TinyGreenPC launched a Raspberry Pi and Linux based digital signage player that runs on just 7 Watts, and offers optional WiFi and an OPS interface.
The Pi Media Player is one of the most power-efficient signage players on the market, according to TinyGreenPC, a subsidiary of UK-based embedded manufacturer and distributor AndersDX. It helps that the 7 Watt, Raspian Linux-enabled signage player runs on a Raspberry Pi.
Fresh off the release of ACPI 5.1 by the UEFI Forum, Linux developers are updating their support against this latest revision to the Advanced Configuration and Power Interface. In particular, ACPI 5.1 is supposed to help out ARM.
While accessing the ACPI/UEFI specifications still require jumping through some hoops, the ACPI 5.1 update is reported to fix major gaps in supporting ACPI on ARM. Hanjun Guo has already laid out patches for providing Linux ARM64 support compliant with the ACPI 5.1 specification. ACPI 5.1 has "major changes" to the MADT, FADT, GTDT, and _DSD for bettering up this non-x86 platform support.
Beginning in 2011, Red Hat began providing assistance to the fledgling Fedora ARM distribution. I was Red Hat’s project manager for this initiative. Back then it was a humble secondary architecture under the stewardship of Seneca College. Seneca was working on an OS distribution for the Raspberry Pi, a promising educational tool. Red Hat partnered with Seneca, provided resources to advance development and helped build a community, the open source way. Though Linux had been used on ARM for many years, kernel ports tended to exist in different source trees. Likewise, many userspace packages had been written without multi-core, thread-safe ARM code, so there was a lot of work to be done.
As the first part of an upcoming series of tests benchmarking the latest open-source and closed-source Linux graphics drivers for AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce hardware, here's some benchmark results for several recent Radeon GPUs when tested on the current Git version of the Linux 3.16 kernel and a recent Mesa 10.3-devel snapshot.
Those wishing to see the Raspberry Pi B+ performance benchmarks with a Debian Linux host, the results are available from 1407220-BY-1407183GL47. To see how the results compare against your own Linux systems, with the Phoronix Test Suite you simply need to run phoronix-test-suite benchmark 1407220-BY-1407183GL47 to conduct a quick, fully-automated, side-by-side performance comparison.
I’m sorry for the late announcement. Here’s a tentative schedule for the 3.5 release.
July 21: Branch for 3.5 release.
- All features should be near completion. Changes to complete existing features will be accepted until the end of testing phase I. But they should *not* be major (i.e., large) changes. If they are, they may be rejected.
Earlier this month AMD published an open-source HSA Linux driver for exploiting the potential of their much-promoted Heterogeneous System Architecture. This driver, now known as the "AMDKFD" driver, is up to its second revision and continues being analyzed by developers on the mailing list.
The aforelinked article goes over all the basic AMD HSA Linux driver details while its the AMD-specific HSA driver that's being worked on the most and discussed. Version two of the "AMDKFD" driver came out on Thursday and lives under the DRM Radeon GPU driver as the "AMDKFD" to provide the "HSA kernel driver for AMD Radeon devices."